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back to article Merde! Paris Apple Store in €1m armed raid on New Year's Eve

Apple's flagship Paris store was raided on New Year's Eve by armed robbers, who made off with iThings worth up to one million euros. The four crooks broke into the shop at 9pm - three hours after it closed and just hours before French revellers celebrated the start of 2013 - le Plod told daily newspaper Le Figaro. Neither the …

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The downside of being popular. Didn't the same thing happen to the VW Golf? So popular it was stolen frequently and hard to insure at a sane price? I wonder if it will spur new technology \ techniques of securing devices. IIRC the USA still doesn't have a universal database of stolen phones that cell providers can use to bar access. It wouldn't help with desktops (although perhaps there is potential for a cell+gps based locator in high end laptops?) but it might with cell phones and tablets with 3g\4g.

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I thought I read that the US finally now have a database for stolen phones. Yes, went live in November apparently: http://www.engadget.com/2012/11/01/stolen-phone-database-alive-carriers-can-block-pilfered-handsets/

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Meh

Strange but amazing

As soon as they are activated the 'where's my ipad etc' comes into play. I'd be surprised if they didn't have the serial numbers of all the devices that were stolen.

Strangely, in the same newspapers they also reported that the doors to the Microsoft flagship store had been left open after the store closed over the New Year. Apparently, when staff returned they found they had an extra 200 Surfaces piled up on the counter. Police are looking at CCTV images but state that no crime has been committed.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Strange but amazing

Isn't that littering?

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Pint

Re: Strange but amazing

LarsG, you're a very naughty boy.

But I forgive you, 'cos it did brighten up an otherwise dull back-to-work day.

So I'm sending you a (virtual) beer.

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ah, thanks! About time!

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If it was due to popularity, for phones I would expect to see Samsung and then Nokia being more common targets.

I suspect it's more a case of being expensive. That, and having a big shop front that's an easier target, which many manufacturers don't have.

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Re: Strange but amazing

All of the criticisms of the Surface (e.g., not wanting touchscreen devices, closed platform) apply even more so to a dumbed down touch-only far-more-closed platform. It's a sad day on the Register when real computers are mocked, and dumbed down appliances are worshipped. Still, with Android way more popular than IOS, we could make the same joke of the Apple shop too.

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Re: Strange but amazing @ Ted Treen

Cheers

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Re: Strange but amazing

It's Surface RT. So it's just as poor as iOS.

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doesn't seem to happen to Samsung phones, what's wrong with them? Lousy resale value?

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Anonymous Coward

Shamsung stores

Are there no Shamsung clone stores in Paris? That would cut down the number of raids on the Apple Store when the tea leafs mistake it for an Apple Store!

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Anonymous Coward

Not worth stealing when most people just get it free on contract renewal. I can imagine going into a pub to sell some iPhones / iPads would be a lot easier than trying to explain 'well it's like an iPad'.

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Well there are fewer Samsung shops, since Samsung sell loads without needing to push them themselves.

But also, remember, it's only news if it's got "Apple" in the headline. There are plenty of raids on other shops, but as always, the media only go advertising when it's about Apple.

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Joke

Further details emerge:

"French media suggest the haul could be worth up to £812,000."

Police have confirmed that an iPad and a 15" Retina Mac Book Pro are missing...

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Paris Hilton

Re: Further details emerge:

They must have had quite a large haul whichever way you look at it. Even if the kit nicked was 2 grand a piece they'd have had over 400 devices into the back of a lorry. More likely it would have been a mix from iPods through to Retina Macbooks.

Perhaps they totally cleared out the place although I would have thought the actual stock that wasn't on display would have been caged at the very least.

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Re: Further details emerge:

I would have thought the actual stock that wasn't on display would have been caged at the very least

If that's the case you may be looking at an inside job (jobs?). It's likely the joint got thoroughly cased beforehand, and with the number of visitors these stores get it's unlikely the security camera footage will be of any value - if you go at a busy time you're left waiting for long enough to have a good look around.

However, serial numbers are going to be interesting to watch out for..

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Further details emerge:

It probably was but a battery powered angle grinder / reciprocating saw can make short work of a lot of physical security.

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Coat

Re: Further details emerge:

Gasp..

You mean it could have been a criminal genius?

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@mad_dr Re: "Further details emerge": Highly entertaining. However, on a practical note....

...........whatever Apple expected to be able to con their customers for charge their customers it is highly unlikely that the thieves would be able to fence their ill gotten gains for more than 10 - 15% of the notional retail value. They would be very lucky to get more than 100k english for that lot, max.

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Re: Further details emerge:

They should've just nicked one single Samsung Galaxy, then Apple would be claiming they'd had $1 billion stolen...

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Re: @mad_dr "Further details emerge": Highly entertaining. However, on a practical note....

Apple gadgets usually have a better resale value than 10-15%. This is especially so when they are current and are new in the box. All the thieves have to do is make up a story that it was a xmas gift and they already had one, can't take it back as the receipt is lost, blah blah blah and they can get nearly 50% of the retail price easy. iPhones will be harder to sell than iPods, iMacs and other kit that doesn't require registration/subscription to operate. The iPhones can probably be flogged off to a Chinese reseller where they are very popular en masse.

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Holmes

Serial numbers

Wonder if Apple know the serial numbers. Then they can just refuse to activate any of the nicked devices.

If so there finally might be an upside to their forced activation process. Although at least it no longer requires iTunes.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Serial numbers

"Wonder if Apple know the serial numbers. Then they can just refuse to activate any of the nicked devices."

Why would they do that? They are insured so they aren't out of pocket, and each stolen item is still potential iTunes sales.

Just like the network operators not blocking blacklisted GSM phones back-in-the-day.

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Re: Serial numbers

Not catching the thieves invites a repeat once the stock has been refilled ("revisits" are very common after burglaries). I think they will be watching the serial numbers, and with devices that need activation you don't have a choice - it won't work without submitting that data.

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Anonymous Coward

Optimism is not dead in 2013

"Apple did not return a request for comment from El Reg"

Good to see you are still chasing the impossible dream

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Easy to understand why ...

> Apple did not return a request for comment

They couldn't get to their email as all their stuff had been nicked

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Worth vs Sales Potential

Is the haul worth £ or Euros xxx or was it likely to be marked up as £ or Euros xxx having cost (xxx/4) to get into the shop?

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Coming soon

Find my Mac Thief [tm]

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Coat

The police gave chase & couldn't catch 'em...

But as soon as they rounded a corner Apple's lawyers were on to them like a shot.

B'dum, tsssssh...

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Anonymous Coward

Reckon it was all the disappointed Android owners who got their copy tablets for Xmas and went to rob Apple to get the one they wanted.

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Rob
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Nope you're wrong, nobody came to me (sorry it's a boring day back).

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The French press is now reporting that "initial estimates were of 1m euros of goods stolen, but some boxes thought stolen were just moved". Says a lot for their stock control! Apparently the robbers waited until a cleaner opened a service door, then pushed in and tied up the cleaner and security guard. They carried stuff out to a van, which again suggests a smallish haul. Odd to do it *after* the holidays, maybe they're hoping to return them for a refund next week?

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Holmes

"le Plod"?

"les flics", shirley?

Also, I still maintain that Tim Cook does not exist, except as a role played by Paul O'Grady.

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Headmaster

Re: "le Plod"?

Pas excitement, mon brave...

Le Plod would be an affectionate-ish commonly used name.

Les Flics is (or at least, was) rather more insulting, more like the old "The Pigs" or "The Filth".

i was advised this some years ago by a delightful young lady from Aix-en-Provence who was very shocked to hear me use the aforementioned froggie colloquialism...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "le Plod"?

'Le Plod would be an affectionate-ish commonly used name.'

Utterly wrong.

'Les Flics is (or at least, was) rather more insulting, more like the old "The Pigs" or "The Filth".'

Utterly wrong too.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "le Plod"?

Monsieur Treen, tu est fou..

"Les flics" is about as insulting as calling the Police "The Police"

"Les Poulets" is the derogatory term for French police (and yes, Police are ... "affectionately" called chickens, not pigs here)

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Anonymous Coward

WHAT?

They stole 4 Mac book airs?

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Coat

Presumably, an Apple store is easy to raid?

I mean, all those rounded corners, you're not even going to cut yourself on broken glass...

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Coat

Re: Presumably, an Apple store is easy to raid?

No, you need at least two Apple Stores next to each other for a RAID.

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Windows

So an actual €100,000 price tag for all the actual hardware and €900,000 in profit then....

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FAIL

"Apple did not return a request for comment from El Reg"

Perhaps they activated the "Do Not Disturb" function?

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Paris Hilton

a Million euros?

The million euros must be from a fanboi's perspective.

From ifixit's perspective must have been about 100K euros stolen.

Now am curious, how will apple claim insurance since the insurance people must also be aware of the apple 'premium' MSRPs for its products as against its actual value by components?

Paris, coz she is never fully closed.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: a Million euros?

Ah crap, I was coming to post the million € value was simply the Apple taxed value.

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Anonymous Coward

iChavs, the lot of them.

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'The French press is now reporting that "initial estimates were of 1m euros of goods stolen, but some boxes thought stolen were just moved". Says a lot for their stock control!'

Could be a smart move. If they can't figure out which serial numbers were stolen or just moved around, that could delay their being entered in the stolen device database. For just long enough to unload the goods onto some unsuspecting buyer. Yeah, the iPhone works. For about another week.

'Apparently the robbers waited until a cleaner opened a service door, then pushed in and tied up the cleaner and security guard.'

Smart move. No alarms are set when the cleaning crew is mopping the floor. This gang sounds like it might be pretty organized.

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The alarm company will probably be aware that the cleaners are people that deactivated the alarm, so no barking dog at the alarm being off.

For shops that have a high value of merchandise on hand, the owners usually have an alarm system that is monitored continuously. If the alarm is not set by a certain time after closing, calls are made. Also, the cleaners will have a password different from any other staff member so the alarm monitor will know who is in the store. Actually, every person given access will have their own code and a log is kept.

New years eve is wizard time for a heist like this. The police will be busy in other places for the most part rather than patrolling the high street. Unless Apple stores keep their iStuff in a safe, they probably only have a padlocked cage to keep employees from nicking stuff. From all of the bikes I have had go missing over the years, padlocks are dead simple to break.

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Happy

How to prevent happenings like this.

There is a way to prevent armed robberies like this have gun control! Oh, France dose? And it did not prevent the robbery? Then there needs to be gun confiscation and the death penalty or life without parole for people that has guns, except the government personnel except when one of them use the government issued weapons to commit a crime. it that dose not stop it then remove the trial to send them up for life.

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Boffin

How does this «robbery» relate to

«inadvertently» leaving a new version of the iPhone in a bar ? All that free publicity ? The marketing department strikes again....

Henri

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